Ramadan: Diabetics advised not to fast

An expert at Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) has advised people with type 1 diabetes, especially those with cardiac and kidney conditions, and pregnant women with diabetes to not fast during Ramadan.

Dr Ibrahim Al Tereky, Senior Consultant Endocrinology/Diabetes, and Head, National Diabetes Centre, Al Wakra Hospital, said this category of patients is at high risk of developing severe complications if they fast. 

Type 2 diabetics can fast while taking special precautions, such as consulting physicians before the start of Ramadan to learn how to maintain healthy blood sugar levels and review their medication regimen, including doses and medication schedule. 

“It is recommended for any type 2 diabetic who wishes to fast to delay Suhoor (the pre-dawn meal) until the last possible time and consume plenty of water between Iftar (breaking fast at sunset) and Suhoor to avoid dehydration,” said Al Tereky, in a lecture conducted by HMC.

He stressed the importance of monitoring blood glucose levels regularly during the fast through blood check-ups daily, especially in the first few days of Ramadan. 

He advised patients to avoid sleeping during the last hours before Iftar.

Al Tereky warned patients against doing physical exercises during fasting and suggested delaying them until night time to avoid hypoglycemia (lowering of blood glucose levels). 

Hamad General Hospital and AWH recently conducted lectures to raise awareness about diabetes mellitus and safe fasting during Ramadan.

The lectures in Arabic and English focused on providing patients with diabetes with advice about precautions while fasting and how to ensure safe medication intake during the holy month. 

Similar lectures will be held every Wednesday this month. 

The two-hour lectures are led by four health educators and three senior consultant endocrinologists. Several patients aged 30-70 attended sessions earlier this month. 

The lectures were followed by informative competitions for the attendees to evaluate how they benefited from the information provided during the lectures. 

Source: The Peninsula

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